Friday, August 17, 2018

Interview with Sara Furlong Burr, WHEN TIME STANDS STILL

Can you give us a brief overview of your latest book? Is it part of a series?
When Time Stands Still is about a couple, Elle Sloan and Luke Hutchins, whose relationship ended a decade earlier. The book opens with Elle receiving a call from Luke’s mother Candy, explaining that Luke had been in an accident and is suffering from amnesia, where he can’t recall anything that happened over the last decade. As such, he still believes that he and Elle are in a relationship. To try and soften the blow, Luke’s desperate parents ask Elle to come to Roanoke to help them explain things to Luke. Still guilt-ridden over how their relationship ended, Elle agrees to travel to Roanoke in order to make amends with Luke, but soon realizes that some bonds just can’t be broken.

It’s a standalone, although given reader response, I may write an additional standalone involving a couple of the secondary characters.

Do you have a favorite character?
This is a tough one, as I’m particularly fond of a handful of the characters in this book, but if I must choose, I would say my favorite character is probably Mena. She’s a take no prisoners, say what she means, means what she says kind of girl. A friend everyone needs in their life.

Have you ever had a minor character evolve into a major one? Did that change the direction of the novel at all?
Yes, actually, with When Time Stands Still, two of the minor characters, Mena and Monroe, have become quite popular with some of the readers and their own book may or may not be in the works.

What factors influenced your decision to self-publish your book(s)?
At first, it was just because I was sick of rejection, but after I published my first novel and started gaining a bit of a fan base, I just decided that I would stick with that route.

If you used a graphic designer/publisher’s designer, how involved were you during the creative process for your cover?
Somewhat. I gave my designer (the wonderful Mia Hoddell of M Designs) an overview of what the book was about and what I was looking for. From there, she came up with a few different cover designs. I was between two of them before selecting the cover for this novel, as I felt like it symbolized the transformation Elle makes in the book the best.

What is your writing process? Do you listen to music or do you like silence?
I listen to music on occasion. I actually had a playlist on Spotify going while writing When Time Stands Still.  Some of the songs from that list were:
The Night We Met - Lord Huron
I Don’t Wanna Live Forever - Zayn and Taylor Swift
I Will Remember You - Ryan Cabrera
Love - Lana Del Rey
Every Breath You Take - Denmark + Winter
Ohh La La - Goldfrapp
If I Could Turn Back the Hands of Time - R. Kelly
I Found - Amber Run
Are You With Me - nilu
Wicked Game - Ursine Vulpine (feat. Annaca)
In My Mind - Heather Headley
You Found Me - The Fray
Photograph - Ed Sheeran
Love Story - Taylor Swift

Did you hire an editor to review your manuscript before publishing?
I did, and I believe every writer should. For those looking for an editor, I would highly recommend Melissa from There For You Editing.

Besides Amazon, are there any other sites where your books are for sale?
Yes, actually, I recently discovered that Barnes & Noble is selling paperback copies of When Time Stands Still online.

What kinds of marketing [twitter, facebook, blog, forums] are you involved with for promoting your book(s)?
I do most of my promoting on Twitter, but I also use Facebook from time to time. I also participate in blog tours and will occasionally advertise on some other websites, such as Kindle Nation Daily.

Do you find it difficult to juggle your time between marketing your current book and writing your next book?
I’m not big on marketing, in fact, I kind of despise it, even though it’s a necessary evil. I try not to let it consume too much of my time, as I think it’s more important to keep producing a product to market.

Some fun facts about you, which do you prefer – dogs or cats? Chocolate or vanilla? Coffee or Tea? Talk or Text? Day or Night?
I’m a cat person, but dogs are a close second
Chocolate all day, every day
Text--I’m not a phone person
I’m a night owl through and through

What’s next for you?
Hmm…that’s a good question. I have a few ideas brewing in my head, but I’m leaning toward writing a standalone involving Mena and Monroe from When Time Stands Still.

When Time Stands Still
Sara Furlong Burr
Publication date: June 15th 2018
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

It’s been nearly a decade since Elle Sloan last saw Luke Hutchins. Close to ten years since she broke up with him over a single phone call, providing him with little explanation. Since the end of their relationship, Elle has done everything she could do to move on, marrying, proceeding forward with her life, almost allowing herself to completely forget about Luke.
Out of nowhere, Elle receives a phone call from Luke’s mother. Luke has been in a horrific car accident and, a month later, has just awoken from a coma. However, instead of celebrating, his family is stunned to learn that Luke is suffering from amnesia and only remembers his life as it was before his breakup with Elle. Not wanting to tell Luke that he and Elle aren’t together anymore for fear it may compromise his recovery, Elle is asked by Luke’s family to come to the hospital to see him. Their hope is that she will slowly be able to jog his memory and cushion the blow.
Guilt-ridden over how their relationship ended, Elle readily agrees, finding herself transported back in time with Luke to the life they once shared and the future they could have had together.

Author Bio:
Sara “Furlong” Burr was born and raised in Michigan and currently still lives there with her husband, two daughters, a high-strung Lab, and three judgmental cats. When she’s not writing, Sara enjoys reading, camping, spending time with her family, and attempting to paint while consuming more amaretto sours than she cares to admit.

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Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Interview with Bernadette Giacomazzo, THE GATHERING

Can you give us a brief overview of your latest book? Is it part of a series?

The Uprising series is a six-book series that tells the story of three freedom fighters who give it all for the life they once knew and loved. The first book, The Gathering, is out now. 

On October 1, 2018, after I finish the promotion for this book that culminates with the Brooklyn Book Festival, I’ll be beginning the process of writing the second book, Kings and Queens, which I already have an outline for. It will be released on March 27, 2019 – exactly one year to the day after The Gathering was released.

Do you have a favorite character?
There are different things I love about each character. Asking me to choose my favorite character is like asking parents to choose their favorite child – they love all their children equally, no matter what.

Have you ever had a minor character evolve into a major one? Did that change the direction of the novel at all?
Absolutely. Tommy Sherman is the most obvious example of a minor character that evolved into a major one – he, actually, didn’t exist when I first drew the outline of the book. But by adding him to the story, Evanora has an equal and a friend – and, as she will soon find out, a purpose.

If you used a graphic designer/publisher’s designer, how involved were you during the creative process for your cover?
Jessica Benoist-Young designed my book cover, and she’ll be designing all six of the book covers. I leave that process in her very capable hands – she does a great job on her own. I’m the type to let artists be artists, and create, without hovering over them.

What is your writing process? Do you listen to music or do you like silence?
I’m not a hobbyist – this is my life. I make my living as a writer/editor, and have for 20 years. So, I treat it as a job, just like every other. Granted, it’s a fun job – a fulfilling job – a job I’m glad I wake up and go to every day, but a job nonetheless.

Do you outline your story or just go where your muse takes you?
When it comes to the actual layout of the story, I absolutely outline it – a beginning, a middle, an end. I outline the plot, too – I map out where I want the characters to go, and what I want them to do. The details of how they get there, of course, is a much more creative process – and one where I allow the Muse to take me where She wants to take me.

Do you find it difficult to juggle your time between marketing your current book and writing your next book?
Not at all. I have a very detailed plan, and I follow it. I do very well with structure and discipline – the only time I like “chaos” is when I’m actually writing, at which point the left brain completely takes over and runs wild. But without a detailed plan – a “right brain” approach to the actual business of writing – you’ll never succeed.

Besides writing, do you have any other passions?
Yes – working out, eating healthy, traveling, the business of music and entertainment, my dog, my nephews and niece, reading, catching live shows, and spending quality time with friends who have become family…and this is in no particular order.

Some fun facts about you, which do you prefer – dogs or cats? Chocolate or vanilla? Coffee or Tea? Talk or Text? Day or Night?
Depends who is on the other end of the phone

What’s next for you?
Right now, in addition to working on the next book in the series, I’m in preliminary talks to get the series sold for television adaptation. Nothing too exciting yet, but enough for me to say that the wheels are in motion. In addition, of course, I’m writing for my outlets – currently, I’m writing for HipHopDX, Wrestling Inc., and TV Eskimo, but I’ll have more to add to that list soon.

Plus, I’m working on publicity for a few films that are going to be announced shortly after this interview hits the press, so I invite you all to follow my social media -- @BG_Writes_Stuff on Twitter, @BG_Takes_Pics on Instagram, and @BernadetteRGiacomazzo on Facebook – to keep up with everything I have going on. I’m certainly never bored. 😊

The Gathering
Bernadette Giacomazzo
(The Uprising, #1)
Publication date: March 31st 2018
Genres: Adult, Dystopian

The Uprising Series tells the story of three freedom fighters and their friends in high — and low — places that come together to overthrow a vainglorious Emperor and his militaristic Cabal to restore the city, and the way of life, they once knew and loved.
In The Gathering, Jamie Ryan has defected from the Cabal and has joined his former brothers-in-arms — Basile Perrinault and Kanoa Shinomura — to form a collective known as The Uprising. When an explosion leads to him crossing paths with Evanora Cunningham — a product of Jamie’s past — he discovers that The Uprising is bigger, and more important, than he thought.

Author Bio:
With an impressive list of credentials earned over the course of two decades, Bernadette R. Giacomazzo is a multi-hyphenate in the truest sense of the word: an editor, writer, photographer, publicist, and digital marketing specialist who has demonstrated an uncanny ability to thrive in each industry with equal aplomb.
Her work has been featured in Teen Vogue, People, Us Weekly, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post, and many, many more. She served as the news editor of Go! NYC Magazine for nearly a decade, the executive editor of LatinTRENDS Magazine for five years, the eye candy editor of XXL Magazine for two years, and the editor-at-large at iOne/Zona de Sabor for two years.
As a publicist, she has worked with the likes of Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson and his G-Unit record label, rapper Kool G. Rap, and various photographers, artists, and models. As a digital marketing specialist, Bernadette is Google Adwords certified, has an advanced knowledge of SEO, PPC, link-building, and other digital marketing techniques, and has worked for a variety of clients in the legal, medical, and real estate industries.
Based in New York City, Bernadette is the co-author of Swimming with Sharks: A Real World, How-To Guide to Success (and Failure) in the Business of Music (for the 21st Century), and the author of the forthcoming dystopian fiction series, The Uprising. She also contributed a story to the upcoming Beyonce Knowles tribute anthology, The King Bey Bible, which will be available in bookstores nationwide in the summer of 2018.

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Interview with Cristelle Comby, HOSTILE TAKEOVER

Can you give us a brief overview of your latest book? Is it part of a series?
Yes, Hostile Takeover is the first book in my new Urban Fantasy, Vale Investigation. The main character, Bellamy Vale, is a former US Marine turned private investigator. Also, he’s Death’s envoy on Earth. And the only reason he’s employee of the month is that no-one else was foolish enough to take the job.

Have you ever had a minor character evolve into a major one? Did that change the direction of the novel at all?
Yes, this happened in the first series I wrote The Neve & Egan Cases. Dimitri, a mouthy Russian who runs a not-so-legal import/export company had a small part in the first book. That was supposed to be it, but he was such fun to write, I brought him back for short scenes in books two and three. And he plays a much larger role in the fourth and last book.

Did you try the traditional route to publishing, i.e. querying agents/publishers?
Yes, I did and got my fair share of rejection. I guess it didn’t help that I live in Switzerland (where there are no agents) while I queried in the US and UK. I don’t really mind that no-one signed me up.

What factors influenced your decision to self-publish your books?
I like the idea of being 100% in control of everything. I don’t know how I would react if a publisher asked me to do some drastic changes to one of my manuscript.

If you used a graphic designer/publisher’s designer, how involved were you during the creative process for your cover?
I used to find the artist who did the cover for Hostile Takeover. I willingly remained vague with my job post, because I was curious to see what the artists were going to come up with on their own. I wanted to see what my story’s summary inspired them to do. I was pleasantly surprised by the entries; there were a lot of amazing stuff. I chose my favorite design and worked with Spanish artists Miguel A. Ereza until I was 100% satisfied with everything.

What is your writing process? Do you listen to music or do you like silence?
I need silence to be able to think. It doesn’t really matter where I write, so long as it is quiet and I’m comfortably seated.

 Do you outline your story or just go where your muse takes you?
I outline everything. It’s an integral part of my writing process. A third of the time I spend creating a book is focused on the outline and the researches. The second third is for the actual writing. And the last part is spent on editing, proofreading and promotion.

Did you hire an editor to review your manuscript before publishing?
Yes, each one of my book goes through several editing phases. I send it to at least 3 different people who provide detailed critiques, which lead to some rewrites. The final draft then goes to someone for copy editing and lastly someone else for proofreading. These are steps which can’t be avoided if you want to produce quality content. It doesn’t matter how talented a writer you are, you need an outside eye. We become too close to our texts to spot our own mistakes.

Do you find it difficult to juggle your time between marketing your current book and writing your next book?
I don’t even try to juggle J. I always put writing on hold when I focus on promotion; there’s not enough to do it right otherwise.

What advice would you give a new author just entering into the self-publishing arena?
Study the craft, find writers’ blog and learn everything you have to do. Writing is not everything, it’s a small part of the job. The silver lining is there’s no clock ticking and it doesn’t matter if your book gets published today or in six months. What matters is that it is the best it can be. So take your time about it and do it right.


P.I. Bellamy Vale isn’t your everyday investigator. Moonlighting as Death’s earth-bound envoy, he specializes in the weird, wacky, and slightly unhinged.

When a mysterious beast savagely mauls random residents of Cold City, the police assume that these are the killings of a rogue wolf. But experienced private investigator, Bellamy Vale, is unconvinced.

Ordered by Death herself to investigate, Vale has no choice but to obey, for his boss is not someone to disappoint—if he wants to keep breathing, that is.

With friend and computer hacker Zian, nosy journalist Candice Kennedy, and homicide sergeant Melanie Ramirez by his side, Vale has no choice but to end the killings or face the wrath of the demon who holds his life in her hands.

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Cristelle Comby was born and raised in the French-speaking area of Switzerland, in Greater Geneva, where she still resides.

She attributes to her origins her ever-peaceful nature and her undying love for chocolate. She has a passion for art, which also includes an interest in drawing and acting.

She is the author of the Neve & Egan Cases series, which features an unlikely duo of private detectives in London: Ashford Egan, a blind History professor, and Alexandra Neve, one of his students.

Currently, she is hard at work on her Urban Fantasy series Vale Investigation which chronicles the exploits of Death’s only envoy on Earth, PI Bellamy Vale, in the fictitious town of Cold City, USA.

Official Website:
Twitter: @Cristelle

Follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better the chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here:

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Tuesday, August 14, 2018

#Review: THE HIGHLAND CHIEFTAIN by Amy Jarecki

4 of 5 stars

Lady Mairi MacKenzie is humiliated after the Earl of Seaforth passed her over and married his ward. Now Mairi's father is dragging her to a Highland event for all the clans. All she wants to do is hide in her chamber, not be paraded around the games. Duncan MacRae has been in love with Mairi for years and had always stepped aside for Seaforth. Once the betrothal was broken, he asked her father for permission to court her, only to be dismissed and refused. When Mairi wanders alone into the woods, the trouble begins and only Dunn can save her. Will she change her mind about Dunn's proposal and see him for the man he truly is?

I've read the other books in the series and this one was enjoyable as well although I though Dunn was a little sappy. He's this hardened warrior and I thought there was a bit too much internal musing for him. I was also a little disappointed about Dunn's treatment by Seaforth especially after Dunn's loyalty for years. He didn't seem to have his back at all and let him to his own devices. The plot moved along nicely and there was plenty of action to keep the story moving. Despite these criticisms, I enjoyed the book. Fans of Scottish romances will enjoy this book.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review and I was not obligated to leave a review.

Monday, August 13, 2018

#Excerpt: THE GEEK AND THE GODDESS by Allie Everhart

The Geek and the Goddess
Allie Everhart
Publication date: August 7th 2018
Genres: Romance, Young Adult

People always say they wish they could predict the future. But not me. I already know my future. I’m going to lose my sight. I don’t know exactly when, but it’s going to happen. And it’s the reason I’ll never fall in love.
At least that’s what I thought. Until one day a guy walks into my chem class and changes all that.
I thought for sure he’d avoid me after he saw how people at school treat me. The teasing. The nicknames. Just being seen with me is enough to ruin his reputation, yet this guy still wanted to date me. And he wouldn’t take no for an answer.
That’s how it began. How it ended is not at all what I expected. Ours is an unlikely love story.

A guy appears at the door. He looks back at it, like he’s double-checking the room number, then says something to a girl up front. She nods and he closes the door.
Everyone looks up and stares at him. He’s tall and thin, wearing jeans and a button-up white shirt with a blue blazer over it. And he has on a tie that’s blue and green plaid.
Who dresses like that for class? A blazer and a tie? Maybe he transferred here from a prep school.
“Greetings, earthlings,” he says in a deep voice. He smiles and a few people chuckle.
“Wesley,” Mr. Henderson says. “Welcome.”
“Thank you,” he says in a cheery tone, not seeming to care that people are staring at him.
“We have a seat for you back here,” Henderson says.
He sees me and smiles. “Guess it’s my lucky day.”
Lucky day? What is he talking about?
Everyone watches as he makes his way to the back. As he approaches my table, I notice he’s carrying a briefcase. Like one of those hard covered briefcases men used to carry to work. He sets it down and opens the metal hinges. The briefcase pops open and inside is his laptop, a notebook, and some pens. He takes out the laptop, then closes the briefcase.
“Everyone, this is Wesley Deckle,” Mr. Henderson says. “He moved here last summer from Sacramento, California. Please welcome him to Wisconsin by introducing yourselves after class.” He walks over to his desk. “I want phones put away and books out. We’ll begin shortly.”
Wesley holds out his hand to me and smiles. “Hi. I’m Wesley. And you are?”
“Luna,” I say as I get a better look at his face. He’s kind of cute. His eyes are a swirly mix of blue that reminds me of those pictures of Earth taken from space. He has dark brown hair that’s a little long with curly waves that make it look messy but in a good way. And he has good skin. Not a single zit, which is rare for people our age.
“Luna,” he repeats, and I wait for him to follow that with whatever rude comment he’s going to make about my unusual name. But instead he says, “That’s the coolest name ever.”
I stare at him, skeptical of his words. It’s quite possible he’s being sarcastic. He looks like someone who uses sarcasm.
“Are you being serious?” I ask.
“Luna. Roman goddess of the moon,” he says, smiling. “You were named after a goddess. That’s cool, don’t you think?”
“Not really.” I look away from him. “I’ve never liked my name.”
“Why don’t you like it?”
“Let’s start by reviewing the syllabus,” Mr. Henderson says.
I open my laptop, not answering Wesley’s question. Because answering it means telling him the history of my name and how it’s been used to tease me, ridicule me, make me an outcast. There’s no need to explain all that. He’ll find that out soon enough.

Author Bio:
Allie Everhart writes romance and romantic suspense and is the author of the popular Jade Series, Kensington Series, Wheeler Brothers, and several standalone titles. She’s also a freelance health writer and has worked on several New York Times bestselling books. Allie's always been a romantic, as evidenced by her early years as a wedding singer, her obsession with dating shows, and the fact that she still watches reruns of The Love Boat. When she’s not writing, she’s outside running, which is when she gets her best book ideas.

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Friday, August 10, 2018

#Excerpt: THE GIRL WHO SEES by Dima Zales

The Girl Who Sees
Dima Zales
(Sasha Urban, #1)
Publication date: August 7th 2018
Genres: New Adult, Urban Fantasy

I’m an illusionist, not a psychic.
Going on TV is supposed to advance my career, but things go wrong.
Like vampires and zombies kind of wrong.
My name is Sasha Urban, and this is how I learned what I am.

Author Bio:
Dima Zales is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of science fiction and fantasy. Prior to becoming a writer, he worked in the software development industry in New York as both a programmer and an executive. From high-frequency trading software for big banks to mobile apps for popular magazines, Dima has done it all. In 2013, he left the software industry in order to concentrate on his writing career and moved to Palm Coast, Florida, where he currently resides.
Dima holds a Master's degree in Computer Science from NYU and a dual undergraduate degree in Computer Science / Psychology from Brooklyn College. He also has a number of hobbies and interests, the most unusual of which might be professional-level mentalism. He simulates mind reading on stage and close-up, and has done shows for corporations, wealthy individuals, and friends.
He is also into healthy eating and fitness, so he should live long enough to finish all the book projects he starts. In fact, he very much hopes to catch the technological advancements that might let him live forever (biologically or otherwise). Aside from that, he also enjoys learning about current and future technologies that might enhance our lives, including artificial intelligence, biofeedback, brain-to-computer interfaces, and brain-enhancing implants.
In addition to writing The Sorcery Code series and Mind Dimensions series, Dima has collaborated on a number of romance novels with his wife, Anna Zaires. The Krinar Chronicles, an erotic science fiction series, is an international bestseller and has been recognized by the likes of Marie Claire and Woman's Day. If you like erotic romance with a unique plot, please feel free to check it out, especially since the first book in the series (Close Liaisons) is available for free everywhere.
Anna Zaires is the love of his life and a huge inspiration in every aspect of his writing. She definitely adds her magic touch to anything Dima creates, and the books would not be the same without her. Dima's fans are strongly encouraged to learn more about Anna and her work at

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Thursday, August 9, 2018

#Excerpt: RESCUED BY THE CAPTAIN by Laura A Barnes

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Laura A. Barnes will be awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.
Abandoned at sea

When Ivy Mallory awakens; she finds herself on the ship of the man who rejected her love years earlier. While he was away working for the Crown, she embraced the London Seasons trying to forget him. Caught in the middle of a treason plot; she must help save her brother. To do so she needs to put her trust in the one man who can protect her. But can she protect her heart from loving him again?

Found at sea

Captain Marcus Thornhill never imagined he would find a lady floating unconscious in a lifeboat out in the middle of the open sea. But it wasn’t any lady, it was Ivy. Seven years earlier he rejected her love for a life at sea. As he rescues her he gets involved in a treason plot that will bring the war to their beloved shores of England. As he unravels the plot he is unable to deny his desire for her. Is he too late in saving her and the love he has for her?


But he was caught off guard instead; he paused in the doorway stunned by the sight before him. Then he slowly smiled and quietly shut the door. His eyes slowly devouring the sight before him. She thought it would be a perfect time to get cleaned up. As she was sliding off Thorn’s shirt, the door flung open, startling her. Ivy stood in shock as she looked up and saw Thorn standing in the doorway with a growl on his face. Then she watched as he silently shut the door and leaned back against it with a devilish smile covering his face. She didn’t know whether she would rather deal with his growl or the smile. Either way she was in danger and needed to cover herself. She reached for the towel and covered her body. Thorn just stood there smiling at her, watching her become flustered. He had her right where he wanted her now. One way or another he was going to get his answers. Also, he was going to make her his. This was going to be a productive afternoon after all. He didn’t speak; he was waiting for her to talk. His silence would be his weapon. Ivy was speechless. His silence was unnerving. She was caught, she knew it. He was not going to show mercy on her anymore. He was going to get all the answers to his questions. Ivy was powerless to him. She knew deep in her heart that she would be unable to resist whatever he asked or wanted from her. 

Rescued By the Captain – Sale Links

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Kobo Link:
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Lulu Link:


 About the Author:
I have always dreamed of being an aspiring author. I am making my dreams come true, one word at a time. When I am not writing, I am spending time with my family. I love reading books on lazy afternoons, and late into the night. Anytime really. 

Married 28 years to the love of my life and we have three wonderful children and two sweet grandbabies. Besides writing, I have always wanted to travel. In the last few years we have gotten our passport stamped in England and Scotland. We are hoping to add Italy to the list soon.

Book+Main Bites:

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Wednesday, August 8, 2018

#Excerpt: IN TOO DEEP by Dani Collins

In Too Deep
Dani Collins
(Blue Spruce Lodge #3)
Publication date: August 7th 2018
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

The family he didn’t know he needed…
At her wit’s end with her twelve-year-old niece, Wren Snow takes the manager’s job at Blue Spruce Lodge so Sky can get to know her father, Trigg Johanssen—a tycoon snowboarder with a playboy reputation.
Gold-medalist Trigg Johanssen is furious she kept Sky a secret, but quits competition to focus on his newly discovered daughter only to have his chemistry with Wren complicate their attempts to co-parent.
When outside forces threaten the ski resort he’s rebuilding, a marriage of convenience seems like the answer. It would give his daughter the life she deserves, but is it too much for a heartbroken woman still nursing past hurts?

SETUP: Wren has just arrived at Blue Spruce Lodge with her niece, Skylar. Sky wanted to meet her father, Trigg—a man who had NO IDEA he was a father until Wren showed up a month ago and revealed her sister had kept his baby.
~ * ~
Wren drew a deep breath of the clean mountain air, closing her eyes and letting the sunshine bathe her face. Construction noises sounded in the distance. Birdsong overlaid it with the pulse of rap music and a sudden, sharp whistle.
She opened her eyes and Oh. She started to flush with self-conscious heat even before she fully registered that Trigg Johansson was coming out of the lane and walking toward her. Her brain said, Hot man alert, then she recognized him and a fresher, more startling rush of sexual awareness went through her.
Déjà vu all over again. Damn it.
When she had arrived here in May, he had been sitting in a small, open-topped ATV kind of vehicle right here where she was standing. He’d been talking to another man who’d given her a friendly nod.
She might have said, “Hi.” She honestly couldn’t remember because her brain had been exploding.
Trigg had given her a wolfish look that she had felt in the pit of her belly. She had recognized him, having stalked him online, but even as she had met his gaze with hysterical disbelief, her girl-parts had scanned the mouth-watering selection and ordered the full buffet.
That’s why she had chickened out on speaking to him directly. She had gone inside, ears ringing with her pounding heart. He’d been gone when she walked outside again.
By then, she had secured a tentative job offer and the knowledge that her life would never be the same.
She had dreaded seeing him after that. Not just because she’d seen firsthand that he was a player. Of course he was a player. He had knocked up her sister when he was seventeen. He probably had a whole flock of Skylars out there.
But who could blame Mandy or any of the women he’d conquered? He was built like a god and moved like a cat, as though he knew how to use each of his muscles exactly as intended. He wore jeans and a T-shirt today and had light stubble the same color as his dark brows. His hair had been in a man-bun the last time she saw him. Today it was shaved into business on the sides, rumpled bedhead on top. His eyes were a sharp, mountain-lake blue, his smile flat and tense. Forced.
That vaguely hostile, hard expression made her heart slip and judder while her limbs felt loose and lubricated.
The way he had smiled at her the first time had been very inviting and approving.
The second time, when they’d all met in a lawyer’s office for twenty minutes, he’d worn a suit and hadn’t smiled at all.
She wasn’t able to find a smile right now. She was standing here like a virgin on her wedding night, throat dry, waiting for him to come to her.
Something nudged her in the crotch, scaring the shit out of her.
“Oh my God!” She jerked back and clipped her hip on the driver’s side mirror. Pain streaked through her hip bone while she scrabbled for balance by grasping at the warm roof of the car.
“Murphy. Sit.” Trigg stopped behind her taillight and snapped his fingers by his thigh.
The dog let his haunches drop, but stayed in front of her, tail swirling like an electric beater, sweeping through bits of gravel on the concrete. His pink tongue lolled out of his black-lipped mouth and he cocked his head at her. His ears and face were black, but he had a white stripe that came down between his eyes. The stripe ended in speckles above his black nose. There were more speckles on his white chest and legs. Border collie and heeler maybe, with Labrador eyes that offered instant and eternal love.
“Quite the welcoming committee.” She smoothed her hand down the short, silky fur on his hard head.
“We usually charge extra for that, but since you’re a VIP…” Trigg shoved his hands into the front pockets of his jeans. She could tell they were curled into fists. The mask of tension across his face bore an eerie resemblance to the one stonewalling in the passenger seat of her car.

Author Bio:
USA Today Bestselling author, winner of 2013 Reviewer’s Choice Award from Romantic Times Book Reviews.
Before making my first sale to Harlequin Mills & Boon in 2012, I spent two decades writing and submitting to every publisher with a transom while holding down a day job and raising a family with my high school sweet heart. Since then, I’ve gone to contract on over thirty books.
While Harlequin Presents remains my first love, I also write romantic comedy, medieval fantasy romance, erotic romance, and small town contemporary romance for Tule Publishing’s Montana Born. In fact, I write just about anything, so long as it’s romance. P.S. I’m also Canadian.

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Tuesday, August 7, 2018

#Review: MORE OR LESS A COUNTESS by Anna Bradley

  4 of 5 stars

Nicholas Balfour, the Earl of Dare, has been summoned back to London from his Italian villa and mistress to do his duty. The last thing Nick wants to do is return to the Dare estate. He has never been able to live up to his father's expectations and after his brother and heir dies tragically, his father's criticisms became even more horrid. After 2 years abroad, his father dies and his aunt has called him home. She holds the purse strings to the estate, so Nick has no choice but to return. His plan is to find a suitable young woman to marry, get an heir in her belly and return to his mistress in Italy. What he didn't count on was being intrigued by bluestocking Violet Somerset.

I really enjoyed this book and I especially like an intelligent and feisty heroine. The interactions between Violet and Nick was so much fun until the lies started to pile up for these two. Forced to marry, Violet and Nick must try to get past all their misunderstandings and try to build a new life together. Ms. Bradley works in many twists and turns in this story. Fans of regency romances will definitely enjoy this book.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review and I was not obligated to leave a review.

Monday, August 6, 2018

#Excerpt: IN THE LAND OF MILK AND HONEY by Nell ES Douglas

In the Land of Milk and Honey
Nell E.S. Douglas
Publication date: January 17th 2018
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense

When Gabrielle “Bree” Valentine awoke in a hospital bed with a newborn baby, she centered herself and rebuilt. Bree didn’t think about her mental breakdown, lost memories, or the features of a stranger emerging daily in the face of the son she is raising alone.
Five years later, on a weekend in the Hamptons, a chance encounter with a man unlike any other jars her—bone deep. Daniel Hawthorne Baird II, wealthy, dangerous, British aristocrat, gravitates to Bree like caviar on crostini. In his relentless obsession with Bree, their lives entwine despite Bree’s resistance.
With the unconditional support of friends she calls ‘family’, Bree confronts the most difficult questions of her life. Unearthing the painful mysteries behind who fathered her child, who the real Daniel Baird is, and the irrepressible desire driving her towards a man destined to be the end of them both.

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“Daniel!” she called out, waving her hand in the air, flagging someone down. Within seconds, there stood Mr. V-neck himself—Danny—flanked by two other dark-haired men. He was dressed more casually than the other men, who wore full suits and ties. He looked like he hadn’t gotten much sleep, and I noticed for the first time his hair color was a rich, beer bottle brown.
I smiled warmly in greeting, but his face was stony and he turned away. I guess Danny and I weren’t friends when others were around.
“Join me, gentlemen,” blonde bob implored. She was English too and clearly knew how to play her role here. I realized then she was the other half of the V-neck Crew from the lobby—Danny’s other half. As she waved her hand, I also noticed the giant sparkling canary yellow diamond on her hand.
Danny’s nod was a directive; the two men filled the chairs between us as he sat at the end, the blonde at his side. As the men took to discussing financials, I picked up they were all English. I was not impressed when they placed special orders to the kitchen, apparently too good to plate their own food or eat what the rest of us did.
“Bree!” I heard and turned at the sound of charging footsteps. I spun just in time to see little Amy barrel into my chair, giggling. Everyone had turned towards the disruption, eyeing her disapprovingly. Well, except Danny, whose eyes were closed and his brows were knitted together as if he’d just been poked with a needle. She wedged herself between the snobby suit guy, bumping his elbow, and fired away.
“Did you know my mom wears a wig sometimes?” she announced, panting heavily from her run. I laughed inappropriately loud before covering my mouth. She took that as encouragement.
“And sometimes, at night, I hear her in her bedroom shaving her legs all by herself. Buzzz, buzzz, buzzz, allll night. That’s what it sounds like. Yep,” she mimed while nodding, smiling brightly. I was wide-eyed as I surveyed the table. The blonde was aghast, as was the suit directly opposite her, but the guy to my side was laughing and Danny observed her as though she were a curiosity.
“Little one, I don’t know if I’d share that with anyone else today, okay?” I suggested amusedly as a pulled a stray hair from her face.
“She won’t care,” Amy shrugged.
“Let’s keep it our little secret, anyway,” I whispered. “Cool,” she whispered back, liking the idea of a secret.
“What’s your name, little girl?” the suit next to me asked. “Amy.”
“Amy, I’d like you to give your mother my card. Tell her it’s in case she needs any help shaving tonight,” he said smugly, flicking out his hand. She snatched the card. I hoped he was kidding when I saw the wedding band on his finger.
“Okay! You two can come play with me now if you want!” she exclaimed to myself and Suit One, bouncing on her heels. I wondered if her mother had fed her bars of chocolate to placate her. Or possibly uppers.
Her eyes bounced back and forth from the suited man and me expectantly, he raised an eyebrow that said ‘how preposterous’, and I took a cue; even his eyebrow seemed to have a snooty English accent.
“Amy, I think the nice man has business to do, but maybe I’ll come and play later.”
“I’ll be on the hill.” She pointed beyond the pool down to the sloping grassy hills beyond and then she bolted for it. I snickered, observing her stumble once, her legs not fast enough for her body.
I checked my watch, wondering where August could be. As I did, the overcast sky parted for just a brief moment, a few beams of sunlight rebelliously breaking through the gray and lavender clouds, the rays falling like tiny radiant spotlights and in the corner of my eye, I caught a glimmer of cognac—just like a spark—and an errant thought raced through my mind, too quickly to catch.
I felt suddenly tense, like I needed some air; air somewhere else. I rose from the stuffy table and smoothed out my shirt, and by the time I looked up, Danny had risen from his chair; the other men abruptly followed suit. I was puzzled by the gesture but I snapped out of my daze, my inner tension returning, when the blonde grabbed his forearm and gave him a look like he’d just stood for the maid.
I turned, heading for the hill where Amy played and stood watching from the edge of the patio, trying to clear my head. Several children were chasing each other and I smiled, thinking of my son, but somehow I still felt…troubled.
Author Bio:
Nell E. S. Douglas has possessed a deep, abiding love for written words since childhood. The transition from reader, to writer, was a natural one. Her first stories, penned on the lined pages of class notebooks, were inspired by her mother’s poetry and epic tales of travel, and a professorial inquisitiveness inherited from her father.
Following college in Florida, Nell exited the world of pure imagination, and entered the one of business, successfully establishing a career in sales, and developing a cup-a-day habit (of coffee). Today, Nell writes everything from story ideas to essays during the spaces in-between domestic goddessing, and contributing as a managing partner to a thriving small business. Nell resides in Florida, with her husband and their children, passing on the traditions of her mother, and sinking her feet in the sand whenever possible.
Her favorite books are Pride and Prejudice, and To Kill a Mockingbird. Her favorite movies are Gladiator, anything by Scorcese, The Time Traveller’s Wife, and Bridesmaids.

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